Accolades and Reviews


• 2014 Newbery Honor
• ALA-ALSC Notable Children’s Book
• IRA Children’s and Young Adults’ Choice
• IRA Teachers’ Choice
• Junior Library Guild Selection
• Bank Street College of Education Best Book of the Year
• National Parenting Publications Award Honor Book
• BookPage Best Children’s Book
• ABC New Voices Pick
• ALA-ALSC Notable Children’s Recording
* ALA-YALSA Amazing Audiobook
* Amazon Best Books of the Year 2013: Ages 9-12

“The well-crafted characters, the hot Southern summer, and the coming-of-age events are reminiscent of To Kill a Mockingbird. But this has added dimension in the way it brilliantly gets readers inside the head of a boy who stutters. . . . This paperboy is a fighter and his hope fortifies and satisfies in equal measure.”

—Booklist, Starred

“Paperboy offers a penetrating look at both the mystery and the daily frustrations of stuttering. People of all ages will appreciate this positive and universal story as I did, but it will be particularly meaningful to anyone who has ever struggled with stuttering.”

–Jane Fraser, president of The Stuttering Foundation of America

“[A] tense, memorable story.”

—Publisher’s Weekly, Starred

“Carefully crafted language, authenticity of setting and quirky characters that ring fully true all combine to make this a worthwhile read. . . . An engaging and heartfelt presentation that never whitewashes the difficult time and situation as Little Man comes of age.”

—Kirkus Reviews

“Vawter portrays a protagonist so true to a disability that one cannot help but empathize with the difficult world of a stutterer. Yet, Victor’s story has much broader appeal as the boy begins to mature and redefine his relationship with his parents, think about his aspirations for the future, and explore his budding spirituality. The deliberate pacing and unique narration make Paperboy a memorable coming-of-age novel.”

—School Library Journal


• Junior Library Guild Selection
• 2019 Whippoorwill Award

“Just as in his first outing, Victor’s first-person voice—enhanced by the teen’s love of language—is brilliantly authentic and heartfelt, especially with his ever-challenging stutter . . . Even the dead man comes fully to life, joining a remarkable cast of meticulously nuanced characters . . . A lyrical and immersive journey.”

—Kirkus, Starred

“The road trip has a Huckleberry Finn-like hue as Victor’s travels introduce him to a wide-ranging cast of characters, all of whom have something to teach. Vawter turns a phrase with skill and style; Victor remains a carefully drawn narrator whose preoccupation with his stutter changes and evolves . . . If the world truly has only two stories—someone goes on a journey and a stranger comes to town—this is a fine mix of both.”


“The carefully crafted novel moves slowly, building to a palpable tension as Victor and the hurricane travel toward their mutual destination . . . Although Victor must still cope with his stutter, this book focuses more on his struggle to understand and express his purpose in the wider world. A thoughtful, character-driven novel that offers a nuanced depiction of coastal Louisiana in the 1960s; perfect for fans of historical fiction.”

—School Library Journal